Employers often use telephone interviews to screen and narrow a pool of applicants. As with an in-person interview, preparation is critical for success!

How Do Phone Interviews Work?
The employer’s first contact may be a call to arrange a time to interview. However, be prepared to answer interview questions during the initial phone call. If you receive a call from an employer at an inconvenient time, ask if you can call back in 10 minutes; prepare and find a quiet place to return the call. Phone interviews are generally brief—30 minutes or less.

A Few Things To Remember For A Successful Phone Interview:

  • Research the employer.
  • Be sure to have a voicemail message that is clear and professional should you miss a call from an employer.
  • Clarify with the employer the time zone, the length of the interview, and who will be conducting the interview.
  • Make sure the interview location is quiet and free from distractions.
  • Have a calendar available just in case you need to schedule another interview.
  • Monitor the remaining time on a nearby clock. Respect the time parameter set by the interviewer.
  • Have a pen and paper available for note-taking.
  • Keep your resume and notes nearby.
  • Remember to speak clearly, slowly, and directly into the phone.
  • Having a smile on your face will produce a smile in your voice.
  • Sit up straight or stand during a telephone interview so you sound more confident and more alert.
  • Remember to send a thank you note.